Schools are facing a surge in discrimination cases from teachers whose requests for flexible working arrangements have been denied, Tes can reveal.
All three teaching unions have confirmed the growing trend, which appears to fly in the face of government calls for more flexible working in order to retain and attract staff.
In guidance issued in February, the Department for Education said “an increasing number of teachers want to work flexibly” – and that most of these are women returning from maternity leave or a career break.
But it found that the percentage of teachers working part-time is “significantly lower” than in the general population – 8.6 per cent of male and 26.4 per cent of female teachers, compared with 13 per cent and 42 per cent respectively in the national workforce.
“This is not just a problem for equality in the teaching workforce – it is also a factor in attracting and keeping high-quality teachers,” the guidance says.